Did you know that humans have been wearing robes like garments for thousands of years? While modern-day versions are typically made of cozy fabrics like terrycloth and chenille, the history of bathrobes is dated centuries ago out of materials such as wool, flax, and thin leather strips.

In this blog post, we'll dive into the history behind these comfy wardrobe staples—from their ancient predecessors to their classic iterations in the 18th century to today's trendiest options.

If you consider yourself a fashion enthusiast or want to learn more about your favorite loungewear piece, grab your robe and get ready as we take an informative look at the evolution of these beloved dressing gowns.

From Robes to Bathrobes

The history of robes worn is closely tied to the robe, a loose-fitting outer garment with sleeves. The English word for robe was taken from the French meaning "a woman's dress." Bathrobes were first introduced in the early 1800s and quickly became popular as they provided warmth and convenience after bathing, unlike bath towels.

While traditional robes were made of heavy fabrics like wool or velvet, bathrobes were constructed with lighter materials such as terrycloth or cotton for absorbency and comfort. The earliest bath robes were often floor length and featured large hoods to help keep the wearer warm.

As time progressed, the length and style of bathrobes adapted to become shorter and more tailored, e.g., shawl collar robes and cotton flannel.

The Japanese kimono robe also influences the design of modern-day bathrobes. The same applies to Chinese robes. The traditional Japanese kimono was made from fine silk fabrics, often adorned with intricate embroidery or prints.

In comparison to Western-style robes, the Japanese kimono was more lightweight and less bulky. This aesthetic can be seen in today's bathrobes, which are often lightweight and feature decorative touches such as contrast piping or embroidery.

Throughout the history of bathrobes, they have evolved to meet various needs and preferences. From knee-length kimono-style robes to colorful cotton bathrobes, today's market offers consumers a wide variety of options. Additionally, modern technology has allowed manufacturers to create even more comfortable and absorbent fabrics like microfiber or fleece.

plush robe

| Feature | Robes | Bathrobes |

| Fabric | Wool, velvet | Terrycloth, cotton, fleece, microfiber |

| Length | Floor-length (large hoods) | Shorter & tailored |

| Design Elements | None | Contrast piping, embroidery |

| Weight | Heavy | Lightweight |

| Origin | China | India |

| Purpose | Outer garment | Loungewear & after-bathing wear |

| Popularity | Common | Increasingly popular |

| Technology | None | Modern technology available |

| Comfort | Average | Absorbent & comfortable |

| Style | Traditional | Varied options available |

| Price | Affordable | Varied options available |

History of the Modern Bathrobes

The modern bathrobe has come a long way since its early days. From the 18th century onwards, banyans were a popular way for men to wear something more comfortable than an outer layer of clothing around their house.

These garments were usually made from cotton, linen, or silk and fit loosely to provide comfort while lounging in the home. As times changed and dressing gowns evolved, they became more of a fashion statement than a mere piece of clothing.

In the late 19th century, most Dressing gowns were used by both men and women in different contexts to suit their needs. The introduction of terry cloth made bathrobes even softer and more comfortable and started the trend of wearing them at home and when going to the spa or hotel.

Modern bathrobes have become a staple in both spas and hotels, providing guests with extra comfort while relaxing. They come in various fabrics like fleece, microfibre, and terry cloth and are available in different colors and designs to suit individual needs.

You can find the best modern bathrobes for your hotel or spa guests from reputable stores like Lotus Linen that sell specialized bedding items. Bathrobes have become an integral part of the hospitality industry and are now a must-have accessory for those looking for ultimate comfort and luxury.

No matter what the occasion is, modern bathrobes are here to stay, providing a fashionable yet comfortable way to relax and unwind in style.

What's the Purpose of a Bathrobe?

The purpose of a bathrobe is to provide warmth and comfort after bathing or swimming. Bathrobes can also be used as a protective layer over swimwear. Additionally, modern bathrobes are becoming increasingly popular in the hospitality industry, allowing hotel guests and spa visitors to enjoy an extra layer of luxury during their stay.

Bathrobes can also add an extra layer of coziness to your home. Whether you're lounging around on the weekends or need a light cover-up, bathrobes can provide just the right amount of warmth and comfort.

These versatile garments are available in various styles, fabrics, and colors, making them suitable for any occasion. Whether you're looking for a classic absorbent fabric or something more luxurious and stylish, there's sure to be one that suits your needs.

women bathrobe

A Short History of a Dressing Gown

What is a Dressing Gown?

A Dressing gown is a loose-fitting garment with an open front, typically knee to ankle length. It has two waist-level pockets and a fabric belt or sash, which keeps the robe closed. It's designed to be worn over other clothes such as underwear, pajamas, or day wear around the house.

Dressing gowns come in two styles: those worn for comfort and those worn for fashion. Comfort gowns are usually made of cotton or wool in various weaves and finishes. They are designed to keep the wearer warm and snug while providing a pleasant texture.

On the other hand, style gowns are usually made from silk or other luxurious fabrics and feature an array of colors, prints, and designs. They are designed to be fashionable as well as comfortable.


The history of the dressing gown dates back to the Middle Ages, when both men and women wore long cloaks with long sleeves and a hood. These robes were designed for warmth but also served as a fashion statement. They could be made from any material available at the time – from velvet to linen – and came in various colors and styles.

In the 17th century, dressing gowns became popular among royalty and aristocracy. They were typically made of luxurious materials such as silk or velvet and featured intricate embroidery and beading. As time progressed, these garments evolved into something more akin to today's modern-day Dressing gown.

In the Victorian era, dressing gowns became more standardized and made of heavier fabrics such as wool or cotton. These robes were designed to keep the wearer warm and cozy while providing a fashionable look.

Today, dressing gowns are still widely prevalent and come in various styles, materials, and designs. People of all ages and genders wear them, which is a great way to stay comfortable while lounging around the house. Whether you choose a style designed for comfort or fashion, there's sure to be a Dressing gown that fits your lifestyle.

Famous People Wearing Bathrobes

Famous people have been rocking bathrobes since the 1950s when movie stars such as Marilyn Monroe and Rock Hudson were seen wearing them on the set. This trend has continued through the decades, with celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Justin Bieber spotted in stylish robes.

Bathrobes are also popular among athletes, who wear them to keep their muscles warm before and after a workout. Brazilian soccer player Neymar Jr and basketball star LeBron James are often seen wearing one.

justin biber bathrobe

The Final Whistle!

After exploring the fascinating history of bathrobes, we can see that they're as functional as they were in ancient times. Rich and powerful personas often commissioned luxurious pieces adorned in valuable materials, while everyone else still needed something to wrap up in after a relaxing soak.

We may no longer use them solely for ceremonial purposes, but they're still essential to our daily wearable wardrobe. With all the bells and whistles we can get if the budget allows it.

There's a bathrobe for every occasion, whether a soft cotton terry robe to wear around the house or a plush silk robe for special events or wedding presents.

It shows how universal clothing items are — even something like a bathrobe has stood the test of time and is still widely used. Now that you've known the history of bathrobes, why don't you get yourself one? At Lotus Linen, we only give you the best. Shop with us today!

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